Apple supplier Foxconn seeks new partners for its Indian chip factory

July 12, 2023 4:48 am

Foxconn, the prominent Apple supplier, has pledged to go ahead with its chip-making plan in India, a day after quitting a joint venture with local partner Vedanta.

The electronics contract manufacturer said on Tuesday that it was “committed to India and sees the country successfully establishing a robust semiconductor manufacturing ecosystem”, and that it plans to submit an application under a New Delhi plan to cover up to half of the costs of chip making projects.

In a statement posted on Twitter on Tuesday, Foxconn said it acknowledged that building fabs from scratch in a new geography is a challenge, and it is actively reviewing the landscape for optimal partners. This suggests that the company is open to working with other companies on a semiconductor project in India.

In February 2022, Foxconn and Vedanta announced an approximately $20 billion joint venture to set up semiconductor and display production plants in India.

However, on July 10, 2023, Foxconn announced that it was withdrawing from the joint venture. The company did not give a reason for its decision, but it is believed that the cooperation fell apart because neither party had significant experience with developing and managing a large-scale semiconductor manufacturing operation.

New Delhi-based Vedanta said it had "lined up other partners to set up India's first [chip] foundry".

The Indian government has been working on strategies to support the chipmaking industry, including creating a $10 billion fund to attract more investors to the sector.

Several multinational companies are down for this strategy. Last month, US memory chip giant Micron said it would invest up to $825m to build a semiconductor assembly and test facility in India. The new facility in Gujarat is expected to create up to 5,000 direct jobs and an additional 15,000 indirect jobs in the area. Construction is slated to begin this year.